Section 157 Legislation


    Highway Safety Act of 1966

    23 USC Chapter 1

    Revision June 1998


    Section 157. Safety incentive grants for use of seat belts

    (a) Definitions. In this section, the following definitions apply:

      (1) Motor vehicle. The term "motor vehicle" means a vehicle driven or drawn by mechanical power and manufactured primarily for use on public highways, but does not include a vehicle operated solely on a rail line.

      (2) Multipurpose passenger motor vehicle. The term "multipurpose passenger motor vehicle" means a motor vehicle with motive power (except a trailer), designed to carry not more than 10 individuals, that is constructed on a truck chassis or is constructed with special features for occasional off-road operation.

      (3) National average seat belt use rate. The term "national average seat belt use rate" means, in the case of each of calendar years 1996 through 2001, the national average seat belt use rate for that year, as determined by the Secretary.

      (4) Passenger car. The term "passenger car" means a motor vehicle with motive power (except a multipurpose passenger motor vehicle, motorcycle, or trailer) designed to carry not more than 10 individuals.

      (5) Passenger motor vehicle. The term "passenger motor vehicle" means a passenger car or a multipurpose passenger motor vehicle.

      (6) Savings to the Federal Government. The term "savings to the Federal Government" means the amount of Federal budget savings relating to Federal medical costs (including savings under the medicare and medicaid programs under titles XVIII and XIX of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1395 et seq.)), as determined by the Secretary.

      (7) Seat belt. The term "seat belt" means--

        (A) with respect to an open-body passenger motor vehicle, including a convertible, an occupant restraint system consisting of a lap belt or a lap belt and a detachable shoulder belt; and

        (B) with respect to any other passenger motor vehicle, an occupant restraint system consisting of integrated lap and shoulder belts.

      (8) State seat belt use rate. The term "State seat belt use rate" means the rate of use of seat belts in passenger motor vehicles in a State, as measured and submitted to the Secretary--

        (A) for each of calendar years 1996 and 1997, by the State, as weighted by the Secretary to ensure national consistency in methods of measurement (as determined by the Secretary); and

        (B) for each of calendar years 1998 through 2001, by the State in a manner consistent with the criteria established by the Secretary under subsection (e).

    (b) Determinations by the Secretary. Not later than September 1, 1998, and September 1 of each calendar year thereafter through September 1, 2002, the Secretary shall determine--

      (1)

        (A) which States had, for each of the previous calendar years (in this subsection referred to as the "previous calendar year") and the year preceding the previous calendar year, a State seat belt use rate greater than the national average seat belt use rate for that year; and

        (B) in the case of each State described in subparagraph (A), the amount that is equal to the savings to the Federal Government due to the amount by which the State seat belt use rate for the previous calendar year exceeds the national average seat belt use rate for that year; and

      (2) in the case of each State that is not a State described in paragraph (1)(A)--

        (A) the base seat belt use rate of the State, which shall be equal to the highest State seat belt use rate for the State for any calendar year during the period of 1996 through the calendar year preceding the previous calendar year; and

        (B) the amount that is equal to the savings to the Federal Government due to any increase in the State seat belt use rate for the previous calendar year over the base seat belt use rate determined under subparagraph (A).

    (c) Allocations.

      (1) States with greater than the national average seat belt use rate. Not later than October 1, 1998, and each October 1 thereafter through October 1, 2002, the Secretary shall allocate to each State described in subsection (b)(1)(A) an amount equal to the amount determined for the State under subsection (b)(1)(B).

      (2) Other States. Not later than October 1, 1998, and each October 1 thereafter through October 1, 2002, the Secretary shall allocate to each State described in subsection (b)(2) an amount equal to the amount determined for the State under subsection (b)(2)(B).

    (d) Use of amounts. For each fiscal year, each State that is allocated an amount under this section shall use the amount for projects eligible for assistance under this title.

    (e) Criteria. Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this section [enacted June 9, 1998], the Secretary shall establish criteria for the measurement of State seat belt use rates by States to ensure that the measurements are accurate and representative.

    (f) Innovative seat belt project allocations.

      (1) In general. The Secretary shall use amounts made available under subsection (g)(3) to make allocations to States to carry out innovative projects to promote increased seat belt use rates.

      (2) Determination of eligibility. To be eligible to receive an allocation under this subsection for a fiscal year, a State shall--

        (A) develop a plan for innovative projects described in paragraph (1); and

        (B) submit the plan to the Secretary not later than March 1 of the fiscal year.

      (3) Plan selection.

        (A) Criteria. Not later than December 1, 1998, the Secretary shall establish criteria for the selection of State plans for allocations under this subsection.

        (B) Selection. The Secretary shall select State plans for allocations under this subsection in accordance with the criteria established under subparagraph (A).

        (C) States. In carrying out this paragraph, the Secretary shall ensure, to the maximum extent practicable, demographic and geographic diversity and a diversity of seat belt use rates among the States selected for allocations.

      (4) Allocation. Not later than October 1, 1999, and each October 1 thereafter through October 1, 2002, the Secretary shall allocate funds to the States whose plans were selected under paragraph (3).

      (5) Amount of allocations. Subject to the availability of unallocated amounts under subsection (g)(3), the amount of each allocation to a State under this subsection shall be not less than $100,000 for each fiscal year that is covered by a State plan.

      (6) Use of allocations. An allocation to a State under this subsection shall be used to carry out the innovative seat belt projects described in the State plan for which the allocation is awarded.

      (7) Federal share. The Federal share of the cost of an innovative seat belt project under this section shall be 100 percent.

      (8) Period of availability. Amounts allocated to a State under this subsection shall remain available for obligation in the State for a period of 3 years after the last day of the fiscal year for which the amounts are allocated.

    (g) Funding.

      (1) In general. There is authorized to be appropriated from the Highway Trust Fund (other than the Mass Transit Account) to carry out this section $82,000,000 for fiscal year 1999, $92,000,000 for fiscal year 2000, $102,000,000 for fiscal year 2001, $112,000,000 for fiscal year 2002, and $112,000,000 for fiscal year 2003.

      (2) Proportionate adjustment. If the total amounts to be allocated under subsection (c) for any fiscal year would exceed the amounts authorized for the fiscal year under paragraph (1), the allocation to each State under subsection (c) shall be reduced proportionately.

      (3) Use of unallocated funds.

        (A) Fiscal year 1999. To the extent that the amounts made available for fiscal year 1999 under paragraph (1) exceed the total amounts to be allocated under subsection (c) for fiscal year 1999, the excess amounts--

          (i) shall be apportioned in accordance with section 104(b)(3);

          (ii) shall be considered to be sums made available for expenditure on the surface transportation program, except that the amounts shall not be subject to section 133(d); and

          (iii) shall be available for any purpose eligible for funding under section 133.

        (B) Fiscal years 2000 through 2003. To the extent that the amounts made available for any of fiscal years 2000 through 2003 under paragraph (1) exceed the total amounts to be allocated under subsection (c) for the fiscal year, the excess amounts shall be used to make allocations under subsection (f).